| | 12-14-2012, 12:46 PM #1
I had been waiting and watching for a while to purchase a case for my phone. I am usually extremely careful with my devices and not too concerned with a case. Plus, I do not like the bulk it adds to the phone. However, I managed to drop my 8X twice within days of each other and said, no more. I had to get a case.
The name brand cases are always $30 or more and I have never wanted to pay that; especially at the ATT store. ATT seemed to have the upper hand on selection; even having cades in store that were not even on manufacturer's websites, ex Belkin Bumper case.
I did what most here seem to do, eBay searching. I waited for a while, checking regularly. Hoping a solid case would pop up. And lo and behold a random Speck case popped up for $13.00 and I put in my bid. No one else made a bid and I was thrilled. No large chunks of change at ATT for a great case.
The case is the Speck Candyshell Grip, in yellow/blue. It is another case not listed on speck.com but is available via ATT for $38!! Too much in my opinion.
As expected, the Speck case is solid. A single piece of hard yellow plastic for the outer shell mated to a soft feeling but firm rubber polymer for the interior. The case by itself is very light with a little flex to it but not much. The blue rubber inside extruded out the top and side to act as exterior buttons. This is very nice considering the flush buttons of the 8X would most certainly be harder to press with a case on it. Another thing to mention is the shade of blue; it is almost if not identical to the California blue of my phone. As for the yellow, I sadly do not have the limelight yellow 8X, so I cannot comment on how well the yellow shell matches. I'd expect it to be very close as well.
The cut-outs are there in all the right places: headphone jack, noise cancelling mic, micro USB port, main mic, external speaker, and camera & flash. The only cut-out that is off slightly is the noise cancelling mic next to the headphone jack. And even then, it is me being pedantic.
One of my big concerns was the back of the case. The blue rubber extruded through the plastic shell and forms these horizontal blue lines for grip. Grip always scares me because I immediately associate with "your pockets will come out with this phone everytime!". This is not the case. They are not raised very high and therefore feel rather stiff. That coupled with the soft satin finish makes for a good combination of feel and grip without sticking to my pockets like glue.
My other concern, as is with most people, is added bulk. As always, any case adds bulk. Whether you are talking crazy protective Otter Box or ultra thin Incipio Featherlight. I feel like this case is a good intermediate. My phone is still thin and the rounded edges make it feel even thinner; just as the phone does without the case. Personally, I never considered an Otter Box style of case but the Featherlight was on my radar. I'm usually most concerns with scraps from sliding my phone and setting it down. Since I had 2 sizeable drops already, I wanted to make sure the phone was fully protected.
And my final note on the case, its physical fit on the phone. It fits just like a glove. All four sides around the screen are tight and even. They leave a wonderfully thin border of blue from the phone exposed with airtight seams. Unlike the Speck cases I have seen before, most noticeable the iPhone, the bottom edge of the case along the screen is solid rubber. There is no longer a slim piece of plastic running along the edge begging to break after taking the phone out for the 2nd or 3rd time. It is just durable rubber that will snap back into place.
Sidenote, Naked drop:
Thought some folks might like to know how it faired being dropped naked.
The two drops my phone suffered were from 2 - 3 feet, off the seat of my F150 straight to the cement. One drop landed back down in my garage with a few small nicks on the back of the phone. Nothing to write home about other than how impressed I was. The other drop, was onto my slanted and wet driveway, a much rougher surface than the smooth garage floor. My phone decided to slide down my driveway foe about 3 feet facedown before I could grab it. The top left corner took the brunt and there are a couple notches in the plastic and 2 into the edge of the glass. The other corners all have a blemish now nor seeable inside the case. And the worst of it was the bottom left corner of the glass suffered a clean crack straight across the corner. But it has not broken. There were 3 long scratches across my screen but. They were undetectable to finger nails. I only managed to notice them when I was thoroughly cleaning the screen in preparation for a screen protector, which came in the same day, Ugh! And even with a protector on, there are no bubbles and the scratches are unseen.
TL;DR: The Speck case is fantastic! Definitely recommended. Also, the 8X fairs surprisingly well being dropped without a case.
Will try to add photos in the future. Currently bored at work.
Link to case on att.com